Lessons From A Recovering Postdoc…

I’m back! Did you miss me? It’s been too long but I’m done with my little busy patch and it’s back to regular posting now.

I thought I’d get the ball rolling again with a link to another blog post that I found over at Benchfly  http://www.benchfly.com/blog/lessons-from-a-recovering-postdoc/. I came across it while I was searching for other blogs written by postdocs since one of the ones I follow has called it quits.

Throughout my PhD and my (limited) postdoc experience, I’ve had friends and colleagues for whom things just aren’t going well. There were definitely some significant dark stretches of my PhD during which I would have included myself in that category as well. If you find yourself in this lot it can be an isolating experience, particularly as you look around at all your peers that seem to be managing so much better – an accepted paper here, a successful fellowship application there. This blog post is a nice reminder that you’re not alone and that things can get better, though sometimes it requires a bit of bravery or a bold choice.

I’m happy where I am now and I’m trying to enjoy that because it never seems to last in science! Only time will tell if the decisions we make are the right ones and I think the author’s advice to follow your gut is sound and should probably be followed more regularly.

Science is a funny career. Our mentors are often our PIs who may be 20 years our senior. Academia then was not as it is now and sometimes their careers can be perceived as being more linear or perhaps more obvious than ours are now. It’s important to remember that times have changed and we may find ourselves walking down much more winding roads. A convoluted pathway doesn’t make someone a failure or less equipped for their chosen career, it may just mean that they’re carving out a new path in the present uncertain academic environment.

Chin up, everybody! 😉

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